Monday, November 17, 2014

Trip to Lenoir

One of the many reasons I was excited to move to Virginia was that we would be so close to North Carolina. Being so close to North Carolina meant that we would be so close to my bosom college friend. I'm embarrassed to say that it took us over a year to finally plan a visit to see them (with a visit in Charlottsville for a BYU game, and a visit in PA for a baby shower in the meantime). 

We picked the dates and were very excited to travel the beginning of November so that we would be able to admire all of the beautiful fall trees while driving. The drive was absolutely gorgeous. It didn't even feel like an almost six hour drive, thanks to the beautiful colors and scenery that surrounded us. Shae took control of the radio, so we ended up listening to Disney and Sesame Street music most of the way (welcome to the next 10 years of our lives right? If not longer). With the music on, he did a great job (even though his neglectful parents never changed his diaper and he was soaking wet when we got to NC...sorry kid...).

It was a quick weekend trip, so we kept things pretty simple. Took some Christmas pictures and played outside on Saturday. Shae had a blast following Rapunzel around, although he wasn't too keen on sharing the few toys he brought with her.

We visited a cute little old church right outside of town. 

The kids obviously enjoyed jumping in the leaves outside of the church the most.

After the church, we walked around downtown Lenoir. Super small, but super cute. They live in such an adorable town. I couldn't get over the scenery, with all the hills and trees. Beautiful. It made me realize how flat it is where we live.

So glad that I finally got to meet this chunk of cuteness.

How did we get so old? How do we have 3 1/2 kids between the pair of us? Who are we?

It's crazy to think that I've known Molly for almost 10 years. Just about all of my favorite BYU memories include her in them. On Friday night, we made a late night Walmart run to grab some things we thought we forgot (that we didn't actually end up forgetting in the end...). It totally reminded me of being back at school. Late night. Walmart. Buying deodorant and other random essentials on a Friday night because we could. Milkshakes afterwards. Laughs and fun chats.

I doubt we'll ever live so close to these guys again, which makes me really sad, but all the more grateful that we took this little family journey down south.

(Feeling slightly guilty that we didn't try Bojangles! I couldn't believe that almost EVERY exit we passed in NC had a Bojangles).

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Red, White and Blue

I never did a Fourth of July post. You know why? Because I didn't take any pictures. And a recap of a not overly unique day with no pictures is just not cool. 

Two weeks ago when I got some pumpkin picking pictures from our friend, I asked her if I could snag some old pictures of us she had as well. I am in love with these pictures. I can't stop looking at them. Maybe because Shae still has his wild curls, maybe because I'm skinny, maybe because Darin is sexy (as always)...I don't know, but I love them and I'm so grateful she took them. This day now deserves to be remembered. 

We basically did the norm to celebrate. Awesome barbecue with awesome food and awesome friends. Then Darin and I went over to Colonial Williamsburg to watch the fireworks.  Holy lots of people. Like, for real. I mean Stadium of Fire in Provo is crazy, but I didn't expect CW to be so packed. As in wall to wall people down the entire colonial street and all of its side streets. I guess it makes sense though right? What better place to celebrate America than the place where America started. 

Our friends decided against taking their kids and let us leave Shae at their place (which is great since they live right down the street from CW and we could walk right over and avoid all traffic). I felt slightly bad leaving him because I would have loved to see his reaction to the fireworks, but honestly, I doubt his reaction would have been worth a cranky sleep-deprived baby the next day. Maybe next year. 

Happy almost half birthday America.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

21 Months

While visiting our friends in NC this past weekend, I had a few moments while playing with their 9 month old baby where I questioned myself, "What did Shae like to do at 9 months? What did he eat? How did he sleep?" It doesn't seem like it was THAT long ago, but everything kind of just blurs together. I'm really glad that I did monthly blog posts on him that first year that I can look back on to remember who he was. 

With that said, I need to do them more often now! If only for my own future self to look back on, cause you know I will.  Here are all my long, random thoughts about Shae at this stage of life.

21 month Shae:

~Is still very friendly.  He has yet to experience the case of the "stranger danger."  With that said, he definitely loves him some mama. When I leave the house I usually have to sneak out so that he doesn't see me leave. When Darin gets him out of bed in the morning I can hear him from our room saying, "Mama? Mama?" But when I leave him with friends or in nursery he seems to forget all about me. He doesn't even whimper when I leave him in those situations.

~For the past month or two he has called both Darin and I "Mama." Just within the past two weeks he has started saying "Dad-E." Shae loves playing with daddy after he gets home from work. He laughs more with him than he does with me all day. Probably because Darin wrestles around on the floor with him and swings him upside down in blankets, which the kid loves. Darin has the magic touch when it comes to calming him down. If he has a rough night or hard time falling to sleep, Darin is the go to guy. I love seeing these two together.

~Likes: Little People, Cars, Trains, Stuffed Animals, Sticks, Pillows, Rocks, Books. He used to really like Frozen, but he's not as interested these days.  These days it's all about "Line, Line, Line" (Lion King) as he says pointing at the TV or as soon as he gets in the car (wanting to listen to Lion King music). He's also been super into Tigger lately, ever since Halloween. He loves when we stop at Barnes and Nobles when we are out for a walk because they have a play train set out for kids to play with.  And milk! The kid could drink milk for hours straight.

~Dislikes: When other kids touch his stuff, naps and bedtime, being strapped down in the car, grocery shopping (unless he is in the back of the cart, and that lasts for maybe 10 minutes). 

~His likes and dislikes when it comes to food are quite unpredictable. He used to love bananas, but seems to be going through a no banana phase. One day he'll gobble up whatever I make and the next he won't touch it.  Over the last few weeks he's developed a fondness for broccoli heads, just the heads of course, but it works for me. Without fail he loves cheese. Everything else is hit or miss.

~We've entered a stage where we usually get to witness a good tantrum or two (or three or four) a day. He's definitely become a lot more vocal (and physical) when he is upset about something.

~His vocabulary is booming.  He mostly still just says one word at a time, but is starting to put things together (like, "Come on, mama").  He says "I see you!" (I-siu) and "One more," but I'm pretty sure he thinks that both of those phrases are actually just a word as he slurs it together.  He's just recently started to copy things that we say as well. It amazes us how quickly toddlers pick up on things. Just this morning we watched a video of a friend's daughter singing "Twinkle Twinkle Little Star," the rest of the day he was saying "Winka, Winka, Winka, Winka," copying what he had heard. This is something we are both loving at this stage of life. 

~He's starting to have a little imagination as he plays with his toys. It's fun to look up from whatever I'm doing and see his creative side hard at work...pretending to hammer his blocks to build a house or put his stuffed animals to sleep, or feed them. 

~Sleeping: Still goes down right around 7 p.m. and lately has been sleeping until about 7:30, some days later! (and occasionally earlier).  Usually naps from around 11:30ish to 1ish.  Some days longer, some days shorter. Some days not at all (if he's being particularly difficult).

And to finish things off, I found these pics on my phone the other day. I took these a few weeks ago when I was cleaning out our closet. I found some hats and Shae immediately started putting all of them on. He then played on our bed with his stuffed animals the entire time I cleaned the closet. It was pretty adorable to look up and see him tucking them, or smashing them with the pillows...

This little man has got a big personality that we love to pieces. 

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

New Dresser

Not really a "new" dresser, per se, but it sure does look like it. Darin has been wanting to stain this wonderful, beautiful, awesome dresser that Mama S. gave us (Because she's awesome and loves us and wanted our clothes to have a safe place to sleep at night). He's been wanting to do it for a good long time now. He finally found some time to do it. He stripped it. Sanded it. Stained it. Varnished it. 

 He took a rain break for a week or so. Shae loved using it as a play house.
 And voila! He finished it. 
I love it! It's an old dresser, so it obviously still has some stretch marks and wrinkles, but the stain is so much better than the white paint. 

And it even sort of matches our bed frame that we were given by some friends who were getting rid of it. Look at us, stepping up in the world. No longer sleeping on the box spring and mattress alone after three years of marriage AND a semi-matching dresser! We're going places people. Watch out. (And don't mind that that picture is totally not centered. We've moved our bed a few times now and the picture has yet to be I said...we're going places :).

Sunday, November 2, 2014


Halloween became A LOT more fun this year. We had a blast taking Shae trick or treating. 

I was worried that he would throw a fit when I tried to put him in his awesome $5 thrift store Tigger suit.  I was POSITIVE that he wouldn't wear the hood. I was wrong. I guess the week prep of showing him Winnie the Pooh/Tigger videos really did help. (And now all he wants to watch is Tig-ah). He loved his costume! He got so excited to be Tigger and didn't even mind the hood one bit! Say what!?!? Sometimes these oh so predictable children of ours can be just a bit unpredictable. 

Thursday evening we did a pre-trick or treating run at Frat Row (the street on campus where all of the Fraternity/Sorority houses are). There are only about six houses, so it wasn't too much for the boy's little legs. There were tons of college students outside of the houses with bowls of candy and games set up for the kids to play. It was fun to hear them oooo and aaaa and giggle and squeal at all of the costumes/adorable little kids walking around.

Trying to get these two to smile in a picture is like me trying to fit in Shae's Halloween costume. Not gonna happen.

Okay, I guess that last one will do.

We even let him have a piece of candy after it was all said and done. Aren't we just nice parents?

Friday we suited him up once again and went to a big neighborhood with some friends. 

 He had a little pumpkin that he was supposed to use to put his candy in, but of course the day of we couldn't find it. Instead he used his all-purpose toy. He used it as a sand bucket over the summer too after he lost his other "real" sand bucket. (He was really excited about the "bu-boos" (bubbles) he received from this house).

 Our friends just had a baby three weeks ago. Love this costume they put together.

His favorite thing of the entire evening had to be these two glow sticks that he was given.  He LOVED them. Coolest thing ever. I was loving these awesome parents for giving him glow sticks, play dough, bubbles and animal crackers... that WE can enjoy all of this goodness.  Just kidding, sort of. 

Halloween=Success. Bring on the Christmas music.